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EUDOCIA (EvSoKt'a), the name of several Byzantine princesses.
1. augusta, wife of the emperor Theodosius IT. She was the daughter of the sophist Leon-tius, or Leon, or, as he is called in the Paschal Chronicle, Heracleitus of Athens, where she was born. The year of her birth is doubtful. Nicephorus Callisti, who has given the fullest account of her, states (xiv. 50) that she died in the fourth year of the emperor Leo, which corresponds to a. d. 460-61, aged sixty-seven; and that she was in her twentieth year when she married Theodosius. According to this statement, she must have been born A. d. 393-4, and married a. d. 413-14. But the age of Theodosius (born A. d. 401) leads us to prefer, for the marriage, the date given by the Paschal or Alexandrian Chronicle and by Marcellinus (Chron.), viz. the consulship of Eustathius and Agricola, A. d. 421. We must then give up the calculation of Nicephorus as to the time of her death, or as to her age at that time or at her marriage. Possibly she came to Constantinople in her twentieth year, in 413-14, but was not married till 42 L She was called originally Athenais, and having excellent natural abilities, was educated by her father and by the grammarians Hyperechius and Orion in every branch of science and learning then cultivated. She was familiar with Greek and Latin literature, rhetoric, astronomy, geometry, and'the science of arithmetic. She was also eminent for her beauty ; and in consideration of these advantages, natural and acquired, her father at his death left her no share in his property, all of which he bequeathed to her two brothers Valerius and Aetius, called Genesius by Zonaras, or Gesius in the Paschal Chronicle, saying that her good fortune and the fruits of her education would be a sufficient inheritance.
From dissatisfaction either at this arrangement, or at some wrong she had suffered, Athenais went to Constantinople to appeal against her brothers ; and Pulcheria, sister of Theodosius, who managed alike him and his empire, fixed on her as a suitable wife for him. Athenais was a heathen; but her heathenism yielded to the arguments or persuasions of Pulcheria and of Atticus, patriarch of Constantinople, by whom she was baptized, receiving at her baptism the name of Eudocia, and being adopted in that ordinance by Pulcheria as a daughter—an expression apparently indicating that she had that princess for a sponsor. The date of her marriage (a. d. 421), given by Marcellinus. and the Paschal Chronicle, .is probably correct, though Theophanes places it one if not two years earlier.
Most historians mention only one child of this union, Eudoxia, who, according to Marcellinus, was born in the thirteenth consulship of Honorius, and the tenth of Theodosius, i. e. A. d. 422, and betrothed, in the consulship of Victor and Castinus, A. D. 424, to her cousin Valentinian, afterwards emperor of the West as Valentinian III. Tillemont thinks there are notices which seem to shew that there was a son,.Arcadius, but Jie must have died young. Marcellinus mentions another daughter of the emperor Theodosius, and therefore.(if legitimate) of Eudocia also, Flacilla; but Tillemont suspects that Marcellinus speaks of a sister of Theodosius so named. Flacilla died in the consulship of Antiochus and Bassus, A. d. 431. The marriage of Valentinian with Eudoxia was celebrated, not, as at first appointed, at Thessalonica,
but at Constantinople (comp. Socrates, Hist. Ecctes.' vii. 44; Niceph. Call. Hist. xiv. 23; Marcellm. Chron. Aetio II et Sigisvuldo Goss\ in the jrear 436 or 437, most likely the latter. In 438, Eudocia set out for Jerusalem, in discharge of a vow which she had made to visit " the holy places" on occasion of her daughter's marriage; and returned the year following to Constantinople, bringing with her the reputed relics of Stephen the proto-martyr. It was probably in this journey that she visited Antioch, addressed the people of that city, and was honoured by them with a statue of brass, as related by Eva-grius. At her persuasion Theodosius enlarged the boundaries and the walls of Antioch, and conferred other marks of favour on that city. She had received the title of Augusta A. d. 423.
Hitherto it is probable that Eudocia had interfered but little with the influence exercised by Pulcheria in public affairs. Nicephorus says, she lived twenty-nine years in the palace, " submitting to (iW) Pulcheria as mother and Augusta." As Nicephorus places Eudocia's marriage in 413-14, he makes 442-43 the period of the termination of Pulcheria's administration. He states, that Eudocia's administration lasted for seven years, which brings us to 449-50 as the date of her last journey to Jerusalem, a date which, from other circumstances, appears to be correct.
During the seven years of her administration, in A. d. 444, according to the Paschal Chronicle, but later according to Theophanes, occurred the incident which was the first step to her downfall. An apple of remarkable size and beauty had been brought to Constantinople, which the emperor purchased and presented to his wife. She sent it to Paulinus, the magister officiorum, who was then confined by a fit of the gout; and Paulinus, deeming it a suitable offering, sent it to the emperor. Theodosius recognized it as the one which he had given to Eudocia; and, without mentioning the reason to h§r, enquired what she had done with it. She, apprehensive of his displeasure at having parted with his gift, replied that she had eaten it, and confirmed her assertion by an oath. This falsehood increased the emperor's suspicions that Eudocia regarded Paulinus with undue affection; and he banished him to Cappadocia, where he was either then or afterwards put to death. Marcellinus places his death in the fifth consulship of Valentinian A. d. 440; but we prefer the statement of Nicephorus, that his banishment was after 442-3, and are disposed to place his death in A. d. 449-50. Eudocia, however, soothed for a time the jealousy of her husband, but it was not eradicated, as subsequent events shewed. Gibbon rejects the whole story of the apple u as fit only for the Arabian Nights ;" but his scepticism appears unreasonable.
The quarrels of the ecclesiastics were the immediate occasion of her downfall. Chrysaphius, the eunucli and head chamberlain, a supporter of the monk Eutyches, wished to procure the deposition of Flavian, patriarch of Constantinople, who had just been elected, a. D. 447. Chrysaphius, finding that Flavian was supported by Pulcheria, who, though no longer directing the government, retained considerable influence, applied to Eudocia, whom he reminded of the grievances she had sustained " on Pulcheria's account." Eudocia, after a long continued effort, at last succeeded in alienating her husband from his sister. Pulcheria was forbidden the court, and retired from Constantinople; and in